Soon after the Nordic Historical Fencing League formed in 2014, we got back to discussing how to handle leagues in the US. As the standard argument when trying to apply something Scandinavia does to the US goes, we are just too big and too heterogeneous to make it happen. Realistically, when considering a land mass as large as our continent, these kinds of things need to be individual efforts that later merge.
The Longpoint Historical Fencing League (LHFL) is a series of events serving roughly the Mid-Atlantic region of the US. The league events are tied together by an overall scoring system based on an accumulation of points across any given season, with finals being held at Longpoint, separate from the main events, as the close for every season. Our league has four main directives:
- Provide a cheap opportunity for regional fencers to come together and compete multiple times per year. These events should be relatively easy to afford for most fencers who have the time to make the weekend trips.
- Be non-intrusive to the larger events that we all love. Along with being cheap, these events should not overlap large national events that many fighters in our region attend, allowing fighters who are active in national events to attend both.
- Provide an opportunity to train under multiple rules. The LHFL will host at least two different rule sets in any given season. Hosting clubs are free to choose which rules they would like to run. Longpoint rules, Nordic rules, 2011-style Longsword rules, modified versions of all of these, historical rule sets, reasonable experimental rules, etc.
- Encourage the growth of judging ability within our community by requiring that all participates in any given tournament also judge that tournament.
For our first half-season, our test season, the following clubs will host league events in these approximate time periods:
- Early February - Broken Plow, Pittsburgh PA
- Mid-Late March - CKDF, Baltimore-Washington Metro Area (Shortpoint)
- May - NYHFA, Andes NY (Fechtschule New York)
- FINALS - July - Longpoint
Can I attend and compete if I train outside of your region?
Yes. You will be scored under the league scoring system just like everyone else.
What if I can't attend every league event?
Attending every event is not required to participate, although it is likely that you will not get to the finals if you do not attend three.
How many events will be held within any given season?
What are the finals?
Instead of the last event in the season simply contributing points to your total, which means that you know if you have a chance to win the season or not based on Doing Math, the top X number of people from the league will compete in a final tournament at Longpoint.
Will there be Women's tournaments?
Yes, provided that enough women are interested to justify running it.
Is it only Longsword?
Will it always be these events hosted by these clubs?
No, our goal is for the event hosts to change throughout seasons so we can all share the labor.
Why is it only in the Mid-Atlantic?
For a league to be successful, it needs to have relatively consistent participants. We figure that events need to be within what most people would consider a Weekend Roadtrip to be feasible, which means the events should all be within about 6 hours of each other. We hope to see several other leagues pop up throughout the US, either as part of the Longpoint leagues or independently.
What if I want a league in my own region?
Great! We are happy to provide information about how we set things up, especially once we get through the first initial test season.
More information will be posted upon the opening of registration for the first event in February, and some items are probably subject to change. The first true season will begin after Longpoint and contain four events throughout 10 months, with Longpoint hosting the finals for each season.